The January-February 2012 PNEUMA INFORMER
In this issue
What's New at www.PneumaFoundation.orgNew Online Articles
New Links and Content Worth Noticing
- "Using the Right Bible Translation?: A professional translator's perspective on translation choice" by Jonathan Downie, from the Summer 2009 issue of The Pneuma Review. What is the best translation to use? Added November 9, 2011. Article is in PDF format, 103 KB.
- "Missions and Miracles: Pneuma Foundation Interview with Heidi Baker" from the Winter 2012 issue of The Pneuma Review. Added January 23, 2012. Article is in PDF format, 82 KB.
- "Deliverance Ministry in an African Cultural Perspective" by Jim Harries. What does vulnerable ministry look like when we are serving in a foreign culture? From the Winter 2011 issue of The Pneuma Review. Added January 23, 2012. Article is in PDF format, 64 KB.
- Book Review: John P. Lathrop, The Power and Practice of the Church: God, Discipleship, and Ministry Reviewed by Jonathan P. Davis. Added January 24, 2012.
Help is Needed
- The Pneuma Foundation is pleased to add content to our website as a resource to our members and friends around the world. We also add links to content that we are not able to republish ourselves, but may be of interest. Here are some examples of links added recently to "Links to Articles & Books" www.pneumafoundation.org/links_articles.jsp and from "Links to Study Resources" www.pneumafoundation.org/links_study.jsp
- The largest list of Pentecostal/charismatic Bible Schools available online anywhere. http://www.pneumafoundation.org/links_schools.jsp
Add your school: http://www.pneumafoundation.org/links.jsp#link
- John P. Lathrop, "Recovering Divine Guidance" Have you found yourself growing insensitive to divine guidance in your ministry? John Lathrop draws key principles from the experiences of the early church whose discernment brought them clarity and confidence (Christian Trends, June-July 2011). http://ctrendsmag.com/30-33.pdf
- Help us improve our Bible Schools page
The Pentecostal/charismatic Bible Schools page (www.PneumaFoundation.org/links_schools.jsp) has been a tremendous resource to our public around the world, but many of the links are now out of date. Would you be willing to test them for us and help us find up to date contact information? Do you know of other schools that belong on this list?
Write to Editor Raul Mock who is coordinating this effort. www.pneumafoundation.org/contactus.jsp
Join us on Facebook
Add us to your Likes: http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Pneuma-Foundation/120599944618303
Reports from Around the World
Lithuania: Miracle of New Life
Evangelistic crusade that reports hundreds making first time decisions for Jesus. "... Franklin Graham began his message on the final night of the Lithuania Festival of Hope. 'Is your soul secure in the hand of Almighty God?'"
Iran: Government declares house churches a threat
It seems that the gloves are finally off. According to a report from Iranian Christian News Agency, Iran's Minister of Intelligence calls house churches "a threat to youth." He also says the Iranian authorities are working to stop the growth of Christianity. Todd Nettleton with The Voice of the Martyrs says, "This is a change of direction from what we saw even two or three years ago, where the government ignored the Church. Now they feel threatened because so many people are coming to Christ that they're publicly speaking out about it." Although believers were already being rounded up under the apostasy law, there was a spike in persecution around the Advent Season: "This is a time where Christians are celebrating. It's a time where perhaps they are sharing the Gospel, sharing the story of Christmas. So I don't think it's a surprise that the government would say, 'Beware of this threat.'" Prayer is needed. "I think this is yet another confirmation of what an incredible work God is doing in Iran."
Source: Adapted from Mission Network News, 30 November, 2011. Full story: http://www.mnnonline.org/article/16518
USA: Church wins Firing case at Supreme Court
Hailed as one of the most significant religious freedom cases in 20 years, the Supreme Court has ruled in the Hosanna-Tabor case against the US government's attempt to narrow the ministerial exception. The ministerial exception allows churches and religious schools to hire and fire ministers (including certain teachers at Christian schools) without regard for rules against discrimination that would otherwise be applicable.
Source: Adapted from the summary in January 16, 2012 Rush to Press from the ECPA
More than 5 Billion can hear the Bible in their heart language
Faith Comes By Hearing, the world's largest audio Bible ministry, has announced that they now have available the New Testament in over 600 languages, languages spoken by over 5 billion people around the world.
Read the press release about their latest milestone and astounding progress: www.faithcomesbyhearing.com/audio-bibles-now-available-601-languages
Nigeria: Christians Murdered, Boko Haram Terrorist Accepts Christ
More than 130 Christians, including several indigenous missionaries, were brutally slaughtered on November 11 when members of a fanatic Islamic sect viciously attacked the mostly Christian community of New Jerusalem in Yobe State, Nigeria.
As one of the Boko Haram terrorists was poised to slit the throat of his Christian victim, he was suddenly struck with the weight of the evil he was about to commit. Dropping his machete, he ran to the nearest church, asking a pastor for help. The confessed killer was led to Christ and is being discipled, even though the family members of the former terrorist have been murdered in retribution for his "disloyalty to Islam."
Read the full story: christianaid.org/Missionaries/MIR/mir20111123.aspx
Source: Adapted from the Nov 23, 2011 Africa e-Alert from Christian Aid.
Arab Spring not bringing revolution or freedom for Christians
The "Arab Spring" brought fresh hope for freedom and change, but for believers, that has been anything but true. Open Doors' Carl Moeller says, "The reality for Christians in the Northern Africa/Middle Eastern region who have experienced an 'Arab Spring' is that the situation is far more complex and dangerous for Christians in that region than it was a year ago. The political dimension of almost every one of the revolutions has become the contours of an Islamic government," resulting in a spike in persecution. The situations are still fluid; however, Moeller expects to see an exodus. "We think that Christians will emigrate more; we think there will be an upswing in persecution and restrictions, but we're still hopeful and prayerful that the church will continue to grow, nonetheless." Pray not only for the strength of Christians in the region. Also pray "that in the midst of turmoil, people would be searching for spiritual answers and that they would find those answers in Jesus Christ."
Christian Freedom International says "'Arab Spring' Means 'Christian Winter' for Millions of Persecuted Christians." www.christianfreedom.org/news/%e2%80%9carab-spring%e2%80%9d-means-%e2%80%9cchristian-winter%e2%80%9d-for-millions-of-persecuted-christians/
A Saudi journalist calls it "The Muslim Brotherhood Spring" english.alarabiya.net/views/2011/11/06/175697.html
Source: Mission Network News, 15 December, 2011. Full story: http://www.mnnonline.org/article/16585
Liberia: Brutal Warlord Finds Jesus and Becomes Evangelist
An African warlord who killed 20,000 people repented and is now a Christian evangelist. A practitioner of human sacrifice for years and a believer in demonic protection, his vision of Jesus in the middle of a battle was a dramatic turning point in his life.
Charismatic Leaders Experience Fire of Revival at Empowered21 Asia
Report from Empowered21 Asia: www.charismanews.com/world/32244-charismatic-leaders-experience-fire-of-revival-at-empowered21-asia
Japan: Missionaries of hope needed
News and Headlines
The devastation of the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami has created an unprecedented opening for many in Japan to hear the good news of Jesus. But the laborers are few.
"We need hundreds of missionaries to come to Japan. This is the hour."
for Current News and Links
- Burma: "Army Targets Christian Civilians in War on Insurgents" (Compass Direct). www.compassdirect.org/english/country/burma/article_122432.html
- Egypt: Massacre of Coptic Christian costs transitional Egyptian government credibility (CharismaNews). www.charismanews.com/world/32248-coptic-christian-massacre-costs-egypt-credibility
- North Sudan: Anti-Christian Backlash After South Sudan's Secession Churches attacked and threatened with demolition as Bashir reiterates promise to make Sudan strictly Islamic (CompassDirect/ChristianityTodayOnline). www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2011/octoberweb-only/sudan-secession-backlash.html
- Pakistan: A Pregnant Christian maid is allegedly tortured in the town where Osama bin Laden was killed (ASSIST News Service). www.assistnews.net/Stories/2011/s11110044.htm
- Sudan: Khartoum government bombs refugee camp during food distribution (MNN). www.mnnonline.org/article/16461
- Kenya: Grenade attack on church kills two and wounds three (CompassDirect). www.compassdirect.org/english/country/kenya/article_122847.html
- USA: New Jersey nurses say lawsuit has not halted them being forced to perform abortions U.S. Rep. Chris Smith said, "UMDNJ's coercive anti-conscience policy is not only highly unethical but blatantly illegal. Federal and state law couldn't be clearer on this matter" (Washington Examiner). washingtonexaminer.com/news/2011/11/nj-nurses-say-suit-hasnt-halted-abortion-duties
- Indonesia: Freedom of religion does not exist "Human rights groups say Indonesia continues to violate human rights and allows the targeting of religious minorities despite its movement toward democracy" (OneNewsNow). www.onenewsnow.com/Persecution/Default.aspx?id=1479932
- Pakistan: "From Pakistani slum, 5,000 seat church rises, showing resilience of community under fire" (Washington Post). www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia-pacific/from-pakistani-slum-5000-seat-church-rises-showing-resilience-of-community-under-fire/2011/11/20/gIQAHwykdN_story.html
- Vietnam: Christians attacked, denied medical care, and threatened with murder (CharismaNews). www.charismanews.com/world/32400-injured-christians-denied-medical-care-in-vietnam
- USA: Chinese house church leaders say China Bible tour is propoganda If there is religious freedom for Christians in China's officially recognized "church," this freedom does not exist for rural or house church Christians, according to house church leaders (MNN). www.mnnonline.org/article/16493
- Pakistan: Police support land grab and assualt on Christians (CompassDirectNews). www.compassdirect.org/english/country/pakistan/article_123795.html
- Nigeria: At least 45 Christians murdered in Plateau State (CharismaNews). charismanews.com/world/32424-at-least-45-christians-killed-in-plateau-state-nigeria
- Egypt: Thousands of Muslims rampage against Coptic Christians Christians are murdered, homes and businesses looted and burned (ASSIST News Service). www.assistnews.net/Stories/2011/s11110171.htm
- China: Human rights and religious freedom at lowest point since Tiananmen Square crackdown (ChinaAID). www.chinaaid.org/2011/11/religious-freedom-in-china-at-lowest.html#more
- Tunisia: Religious police extering influence An Islamist "committee for the promotion of virtue and the prevention of vice" is already getting its way and suppressing freedom (Hudson New York). www.hudson-ny.org/2644/tunisia-religious-police
- USA: "Amid Global Recession, Giving to Evangelical Nonprofits Up" Increases to child sponsorship and orphan care programs are particularly encouraging (CharismaNews). charismanews.com/opinion/32502-amid-global-recession-giving-to-evangelical-nonprofits-up
- Editorial: Religious Freedom on Shaky Ground at the United Nations (ACLJ). http://aclj.org/united-nations/religious-freedom-shaky-ground-united-nations
CBN News says a "Muslim group is pushing a United Nations resolution that would criminalize criticism of religions." http://www.cbn.com/cbnnews/world/2011/December/Muslim-Mafia-Targeting-Religious-Freedoms--/
- India: Christian activist murdered in Orissa's Ganjam District (International Christian Concern). www.persecution.org/2011/12/19/christian-activist-killed-in-india
- Editorial: Calvin L. Smith, "Former Tory Leader's Son on Anglican Anti-Semitism" Scholar Calvin Smith writes about a recent online article posted by a "well-known Christian making some very serious accusations of fellow Christians", that they have embraced an ugly anti-Semitism. www.calvinlsmith.com/2011/12/former-tory-leaders-son-on-anglican.html
- Nigeria: More attacks on churches likely Pray for those living in fear of attacks by terrorists (MNN). mnnonline.org/article/16626
- Persecution Watch: The Open Doors 2012 World Watch List has Islamic countries dominating the list of persecutors (MNN). www.mnnonline.org/article/16657
- India: New Bill Could Protect Persecuted Christians in India (CharismaNews). charismanews.com/world/32595-new-bill-could-protect-persecuted-christians-in-india
- Nigeria: Troops Deployed to Aid Christians as Experts Fear "Holy War" (The Christian Post). http://global.christianpost.com/news/nigeria-deploys-troops-to-aid-christians-as-experts-fear-holy-war-66303/
- USA: Christian Anti-Defamation Commission reveals Top Anti-Christian Acts of 2011 (CharismaNews). charismanews.com/us/32590-top-anti-christian-acts-of-2011-revealed
- Christianity May Be Eradicated in Iraq and Afghanistan, Says Chair of U.S. Religious Freedom Commission (CNSNews.com). http://cnsnews.com/news/article/christianity-may-be-eradicated-iraq-and-afghanistan-says-chair-us-religious-freedom
- Iran: AG Church Raided On December 23, the Iranian Intelligence Agency raided an Assemblies of God church in Ahvaz (CharismaNews). http://charismanews.com/world/32609-ag-church-raided-by-iranian-intelligence-agency
- Indonesia: Anti-Christian Incidents Nearly Doubled in 2011 (CompassDirect). www.compassdirect.org/english/country/indonesia/article_1331441.html
- Philippine Flood Survivors Say Hundreds of Children Were Snatched from their Beds (Christian Aid). www.christianaid.org/missionaries/mir/mir20120110.aspx
- Burma: After 63 years of conflict, oppresive government signs ceasefire with Karen rebels Will this mean an end to the genocide and persecution? (MNN). www.mnnonline.org/article/16695
- North Sudan: All church leaders must register The tenuous religious freedoms of Christians living in northern Sudan have been eroded further (MNN). www.mnnonline.org/article/16731
- USA: "Pro-Life Student Wins College Free Speech Battle" (CharismaNews). charismanews.com/us/32711-pro-life-student-wins-college-free-speech-battle
- China: Will 2012 be a nightmare for house churches? "[T]he year 2011 saw the greatest number of violations of human rights in China since the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989" and some watch dog groups predict 2012 may be even worse (The Christian Post). www.christianpost.com/news/church-raids-in-china-to-intensify-in-2012-67863/
See other news to pray and praise God about in the Prayer Requests department below.
Report the News
We are looking for stories about what God is doing in the world, reports about the persecution of Christians, and information about significant trends and ministry opportunities. If you have a news item to report, please send an email to the PNEUMA INFORMER. www.PneumaFoundation.org/ContactUs.jsp
Resources You Can Use
Billy Graham Sermon Audio Archives Available Online
CharismaNews announcing this resource: www.charismanews.com/culture/32265-billy-graham-sermon-audio-archives-available-online
Billy Graham Evangelistic Association website where the resource is available: www.billygraham.org/audio-archives.asp
Pentecostal Theology Conversation
John Lathrop writes about a new group on Facebook that might be of interest to our readers:
Yesterday I saw that there is a new group on Facebook called Pentecostal Theology Worldwide. A couple of my Facebook friends joined. You have to ask to join (and be approved). ... I see that Assemblies of God scholar, Stanley Horton, is part of the group.
Converge 2012: joint meeting of Empowered 21 USA with the 41st annual meeting of the Society for Pentecostal Studies
Where: Hosted by Regent University (Virginia Beach, VA).
When: February 29 through March 3, 2012.
Theme: Pentecostalisms, Peacemaking, and Social Justice/ Righteousness
Converge 2012 is a gathering of ministry leaders and scholars from around the world and across the United States.
More information: Empowered 21 http://www.empowered21.com
Society for Pentecostal Studies http://www.sps-usa.org
Excerpts from THE PNEUMA REVIEW
THE PNEUMA REVIEW is a quarterly printed journal of ministry resources and theology for Pentecostal and charismatic ministries and leaders. For more information about THE PNEUMA REVIEW, and to learn how to subscribe, please visit: Introducing THE PNEUMA REVIEW. www.pneumafoundation.org/intro_pr.jsp
For a full index of the contents of all Pneuma Review issues, visit: http://www.pneumafoundation.org/pr_archive.jsp.
Excerpt from "The Third Wave" by Henry I. Lederle
From the Winter 2012 issue
An excerpt from:
"The Third Wave: New Independent Charismatic Churches"
Part 1 of 2
Now available in full on PneumaReview.com: pneumareview.com/hlederle-third-wave-1
This is part of chapter six from Henry I. Lederle, Theology with Spirit: The Future of the Pentecostal & Charismatic Movements in the 21st Century (Tulsa: Word & Spirit Press, 2010). Used with permission.
Henry I. Lederle, Theology with Spirit: The Future of the Pentecostal & Charismatic Movements in the 21st Century.
Tulsa: Word & Spirit Press, 2010. x + 246 pp.; bibliography, index. ISBN: 978-0-9819526-3-5.
Distributed by Ingram (ingrambook.com). Available at BarnesAndNoble.com and Amazon.com, also in the Kindle Store.
Query WordSP@gmail.com regarding discounts for quantity purchases.
Henry I. Lederle, D.Th. (University of South Africa) and M.A. (University of Orange Free State), is Professor of Theology and Ministry at Sterling College in Sterling, Kansas. He is the author of Treasures Old and New: Interpretations of Spirit-Baptism in the Charismatic Renewal Movement (Hendrickson, 1988) and several collections of essays, articles and reviews.
Read more articles in the Winter 2012 issue of THE PNEUMA REVIEW www.pneumafoundation.org/intro_pr.jspTHEOLOGY FOR A TROUBLED BELIEVER, Reviewed by Bernie Van De Walle
From the Winter 2012 issue
Diogenes Allen, Theology for a Troubled Believer: An Introduction to the Christian Faith (Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2010), 223 pages, ISBN 9780664223229.
Now available on PneumaReview.com: pneumareview.com/diogenes-allen-theology-for-a-troubled-believer
Reviewed by Bernie A. Van De Walle
Preview Theology for a Troubled Believer
Bernie A. Van De Walle, Ph.D. (Drew University), is Professor of Historical and Systematic Theology at Ambrose University College in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. The author of The Heart of the Gospel: A. B. Simpson, the Fourfold Gospel, and Late Nineteenth-Century Evangelical Theology, he has served as the President of the Christian Theological Research Fellowship and sits on the Steering Committee of the Wesleyan Holiness Consortium.
Read more reviews and other articles in every issue of THE PNEUMA REVIEW www.pneumafoundation.org/intro_pr.jsp
- Nigeria: Muslim terrorists continue to kill Christians and burn churches. The extremist group Boko Haram is a threat to Nigeria's stability and security and to the religious freedoms of all non-Muslims. Todd Nettleton with Voice of the Martyrs says, "They absolutely want Nigeria to be under Sharia law. The term 'Boko Haram' means 'Western education is a sin,' so they clearly want to return the entire country of Nigeria to what they would see as the traditional Muslim way - that is, for Sharia to be in place for the whole country." Hundreds have been killed in 2011, including 100 Christians in October. Church leaders are frustrated at the lack of government intervention, some even speaking of succession. Pray for believers. "They want to respond in a way that is effective. They want to encourage their government to protect them, but they also want to follow Christ's call to 'forgive those who persecute you and to love your enemies.'"
Read a related report from International Christian Concern: www.persecution.org/2011/11/07/muslims-radicals-kill-150-in-nigeria-churches-also-attacked
Source: Adapted from Mission Network News, 9 November, 2011. http://www.mnnonline.org/article/16443
- Rabson, a minister in India, asks for prayer: "We kindly ask you to pray for the continued provision of food for the orphan children under our care. We also request for your prayers that God will open ways for these needy children to get clothing. We also kindly ask you to pray for people to help sponsor these children for them to receive a better education that will help them be self-sufficient in the future."
Reference Number: 90048974